Edinburgh's Old Town is a maze of beautifully preserved architectural and historical wonders. In 1995, together with the New Town, it became a UNESCO World Heritage site. It's best to explore the ancient cobbled streets on foot. You can discover dozens of medieval gems hidden down the series of closes and wynds (narrow alleyways) which lead off from the Royal Mile, also known as the High Street.

    With so many iconic churches, museums, souvenirs shops and quaint pubs to visit, you could spend the entire day in this spellbinding quarter. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, because even though the area isn't big, you'll be walking up and down steep streets and staircases.

    So, whether you're a history buff, photography enthusiast, or travelling with kids, wandering around Edinburgh's Old Town, with its picture-perfect scenery and enchanting atmosphere, will be an unforgettable experience.

    Edinburgh Old Town - one of the highlights of 10 Most Popular Neighbourhoods in Edinburgh and 10 Best Things to Do After Dinner in Edinburgh (Read all about Edinburgh here)

    A brief history of Old Town Edinburgh

    The Old Town is over 1,000 years old, making it the oldest part of Edinburgh. The city developed on an unusual landscape consisting of a rocky hill and a tapering ridge running downhill. On the hilltop, dominating the city's skyline is the imposing Edinburgh Castle which dates to the reign of King David I (1124–1153). Throughout the centuries, the castle has been a military garrison, royal residence, and prison. Evidence shows it's one of most attacked fortresses in the world.

    The rest of the medieval town slowly developed down the ridge, ending at the 12th century Holyrood Abbey at the foot of the hill. Edinburgh was the capital of Scotland in the 1500s. By the time Mary, Queen of Scots was born in 1542, the unique layout of wynds and side streets between tall, narrow tenements was well-established.

    What are the highlights of Old Town?

    Edinburgh's Old Town is an alluring destination all year round. Start your day by climbing stone steps to the world-famous Edinburgh Castle. The panoramic views from the top are extraordinary. Don't miss the long-standing tradition of the 1 pm gun, fired every day except Sundays, Good Friday, and Christmas Day. As you descend the Royal Mile and into the historic labyrinth, you can see the city's most significant landmarks.

    Visit the 6-floor Camera Obscura and enjoy clever optical illusions, kaleidoscopes, plasma domes and other ingenious devices. Admire the magnificent architecture, a vaulted ceiling, and an ornate tomb at St Giles' Cathedral. Browse the cute shops on the picturesque Victoria Street – said to have inspired Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter books. 

    Relive Scotland's fascinating history at the National Museum of Scotland or discover Edinburgh's medical achievements at the Surgeons' Hall Museums. On a tour of the Palace of Holyroodhouse – the official Royal Residence in Edinburgh – you get to see the State Apartments, Throne Room, and Palace Gardens.

    Good to know about Edinburgh Old Town

    If you're visiting the Old Town on a budget, there are inexpensive things to do and see. The National Museum of Scotland and Writers' Museum offer free entrance. There are many donation-based walking tours to choose from, including a Harry Potter-themed tour.  

    When the sun is out, head to one of Edinburgh's green spaces and have a picnic on manicured lawns. Princes Street Gardens and Inverleith Park are great options. If you want to walk a bit more, head to the top of Arthur's Seat. It takes about 45 minutes, and the views of the city and castle looming in the distance are phenomenal. The path starts from the car park behind Holyrood Palace. 

    If you visit the city in August, you can enjoy the thrilling Edinburgh Fringe Festival. It's the world's largest arts festival, and the experience will be second to none. Take note that bars, restaurants, public transport, and streets get very busy during this time.

    Edinburgh Old Town

    ที่ตั้ง: Edinburgh, UK

    Jacqui de Klerk | นักเขียนประจำ




    United Kingdom

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